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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsETHERBORN - 3D Gravitational Exploration Platformer - CROWDFUNDING ON FIG!
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Author Topic: ETHERBORN - 3D Gravitational Exploration Platformer - CROWDFUNDING ON FIG!  (Read 6506 times)
Sentionaut
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« on: June 06, 2016, 09:46:38 AM »



We're currently running a crowdfunding campaign to finish the game and publish it on PC, Xbox, PS4 and Switch. If you want to make this happen, you can help us with a pledge, and/or spread the word sharing it on social media!

Campaign: Fig.co/Etherborn

Big thanks to all the people supporting us! It makes us really, really happy Smiley





"In Etherborn, you play as a mute character that has just been born into a world where a bodiless voice awaits your arrival".





Gameplay



Etherborn is an exploration platformer game set in a strange and exotic world where the laws of physics behave in a completely different way than in ours. The main character experiences gravity in a direction perpendicular to the surface she’s standing on.


The game offers a series of navigation-based puzzles; you’ll have to explore your surroundings in order to figure out each one’s underlying logic, find the correct route to advance and unlock it. At the moment, all game mechanics are pretty much based on experimentation (trial and error) but we’re also working on alternative ones based on logic, which we’ll show as soon as possible. Every one of them, however, will still be related to exploration.
We take inspiration from games such as Ico, Journey, Monument Valley, Gravity rush and even Mario Galaxy to help us design the gameplay and find the kind of feelings we want to convey.


Backtracking is a significant aspect of the game: occasionally, you won’t be able to progress until you somehow modify the level structure, which will open new, unexpected ways to walk through it.


Art


Different styles and media have inspired the development of Etherborn. In this game we can find art inspired by works such as the ones by Anish Kapoor, Chiharu Shiota, MC. Escher, David O’Reilly and many others, and obviously by other games like Ico, Shadow of the Colossus, Monument Valley or Tearaway, too.




Technical: Unity 3D, assets.


Click to enlarge.

Platforms: Currently under development for PC and XBox One.

We’re making the game using Unity 5, since it’s a great time saver and offers artists a lot of autonomy when building levels. We’ve also acquired several assets from the store that make the development process more efficient and improve the results. Right now we are using these ones:

-SSAO Pro.
-MK Glow System
(free).
-SLATE (for cutscenes).
-Camera Path.
-Flow
(for the green poison pools).
-Rewired, for input management.
-Subsurface Scattering, to make stone with a marble-like density.
-Vectrosity for drawing lines, creating wireframes, etc (we're still testing this one).




About Us


We are Altered Matter, a small team based in Barcelona; our goal is to use entertainment as a vehicle for artistic expression.
Formerly known as Ether Team (an extremely original name, I know), we first met in 2014 while studying a Master Degree in Videogame Design at the UPC Tech Talent School. There, we created the first playable versions of Etherborn, which was then called 2184 (our team didn’t have a name at that moment). The game was quite different back then, but it already used our current gravity mechanics.
After finishing the Master Degree, we applied for the GameBCN business incubation program, and we were selected! Thanks to this, we're now able to work fulltime Smiley
Right now the team consists only of four members:

Carles Triviño Massó: Programmer and Game Designer. TIG Username: jaketa; Twitter: twitter.com/jaketa.
Samuel Cohen (me): Artist and Game Designer. TIG Username: Sentionaut; Twitter: twitter.com/SamuelVCK
Alexandra Escudero Pérez: Producer.
Gabriel Garrido García: Music and sound. Twitter: twitter.com/gabrimusic87



Old stuff






« Last Edit: May 09, 2018, 10:02:38 AM by Sentionaut » Logged

fonserbc
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« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2016, 12:57:26 PM »

This is looking amazing!

Keep it up guys, looking forward to the process of development!
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sionco
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« Reply #2 on: June 06, 2016, 01:16:24 PM »

Bienvenido! y felicidades!

The environment is jaw-droppingly beautiful!
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« Reply #3 on: June 06, 2016, 01:58:41 PM »

Thanks guys! Gracias! :D

There's actually a couple of improvements we're making right now, I can't wait to show them! Smiley
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io3 creations
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« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2016, 10:32:48 AM »

I like your game's visual style.  The puzzles should be interesting too. Smiley

Interestingly, I've seen another game that uses similar visuals using the Unreal engine: Traces of Light.  Or perhaps just intends to use as the devlog hasn't been updated for a long time now.

I thought it should be possible but you have certainly confirmed my question if it is possible to create a game with Unity that looks like the game? Smiley
http://tracesoflightgame.com/media.html
https://forums.unrealengine.com/showthread.php?54925-Traces-of-Light
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« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2016, 01:14:17 PM »

@io3 creations:

Thanks for the feedback Smiley

Yep, I knew about that game like two months ago (shame on me) and it surprised me, since it's true that some elements have a similar taste! I hope it's still on development, because those concepts are amazing.

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io3 creations
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« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2016, 10:51:06 AM »

I've seen quite a few projects that seemed to have been abandoned ...  but also saw a few that were continued even after a year of no updates.  So, there's always the possibility.  Smiley

After seeing various tilt-shifting and similar "miniaturized blurry effects" I also had a similar adventure game idea many years ago.   So for now, the best we can do is to finish our own games. Grin 
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« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2016, 01:41:29 PM »

Yep, I hope nothing prevents Etherborn from being completed!  Grin
----
For now, we've got some great news to announce. We haven't been able to post it earlier because we were quite busy, but... Etherborn es going to be at the E3 MIX!  Grin

http://www.mediaindieexchange.com/event/e3-2016/

By the way, we can also confirm that we're going to be at the Gamelab, in Barcelona! Smiley

PD: contact email added to the OP.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2016, 01:46:37 PM by Sentionaut » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2016, 12:45:49 AM »

Ohh, the game looks impressive! Like a mix of Fez, Rez and surreal films. Good luck at E3, I will try to check it there Smiley 
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Columbus007
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« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2016, 07:10:22 AM »

This looks awesome.

I just posted my first DevLog for a game with similar mechanic, but an FPS - GravBoots (https://forums.tigsource.com/index.php?topic=56350.0)!

Your art style and look are really top notch.

I'll definitely be following this.
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GravBoots - A ZeroG FPS: DevLog | Demo
Sentionaut
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« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2016, 12:32:22 PM »

Ohh, the game looks impressive! Like a mix of Fez, Rez and surreal films. Good luck at E3, I will try to check it there Smiley  

Thanks! If you have any suggestion after playing the demo, let us know! Smiley

This looks awesome.

I just posted my first DevLog for a game with similar mechanic, but an FPS - GravBoots (https://forums.tigsource.com/index.php?topic=56350.0)!

Your art style and look are really top notch.

I'll definitely be following this.

Thank you! I'm glad you liked the art style Grin
Btw, are you still developing that game? Gravity-based mechanics are usually quite fun to play.

---

Well, so here is my first update on the art. I haven’t explained it yet, but that scenery with the tree is actually the overworld. It’s a tree made of several trunks emerging from the infinite, but all of them end in the same top (a difficult concept to explain during the game, but I think we’ve been successful enough using a short cinematic).
By walking along its trunks, the player will get to the portals that lead to the different levels.

This week I’ve been improving the tree model, as its polygons were way too big and there was a visual inconsistency between the character’s detail density and that of its surroundings. Also, I’ve been working on the path to make it look more organic and interesting. I still have to polish some branches to make them more natural and there’s also some geometry I should optimize. Anyway, I was afraid of the performance dropping too much because of my 5 year old budget CPU, but it’s running quite smoothly. Actually, it might be running better than before, since now the clipping distance is lower.

I've been playing around with the free camera in debug mode:










Just for comparision, this is a screenshot taken with the previous tree model:

« Last Edit: April 18, 2018, 02:10:55 AM by Sentionaut » Logged

Columbus007
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« Reply #11 on: June 10, 2016, 03:22:18 PM »


This looks awesome.

I just posted my first DevLog for a game with similar mechanic, but an FPS - GravBoots (https://forums.tigsource.com/index.php?topic=56350.0)!

Your art style and look are really top notch.

I'll definitely be following this.

Thank you! I'm glad you liked the art style Grin
Btw, are you still developing that game? Gravity-based mechanics are usually quite fun to play.

Yes, I'm still developing the game, but not at the rate I was at when I got started. I've only put about 3 weeks of work into it, so there is a lot of stuff that needs work - path finding, better animations, more level structures, etc. I'd love feedback on it so far, though. Check my signature for a link to download the demo (windows and Mac)
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Sentionaut
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« Reply #12 on: June 11, 2016, 10:26:15 AM »

@Columbus007: Great, I'm downloading the demo. I'll try to check it during this week, when I have some time! Smiley

« Last Edit: June 11, 2016, 10:33:45 AM by Sentionaut » Logged

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« Reply #13 on: June 21, 2016, 07:55:47 AM »

Looks really interesting. Glad to see this on here
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Ashton Morris - Composer & Sound Designer

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« Reply #14 on: June 21, 2016, 08:36:10 AM »

Wow. I agree with Ashton. Some Devlogs really shine! I personally love the camera focus element. Having the blurred distance =  Hand Thumbs Up Left Hand Thumbs Up Left Hand Thumbs Up Left Hand Thumbs Up Left
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« Reply #15 on: June 21, 2016, 08:39:28 AM »

This looks incredible! Well done! The at style kind of has a super hot vibe to it, and the idea itself is great!
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« Reply #16 on: June 21, 2016, 12:56:01 PM »

Hi! I'm Carles, the lead programmer of Etherborn. I wanted to introduce myself here as well, as I will also be posting updates about our project, probably more of the programming side, new mechanics, etc.

Right now, we are testing a new kind of camera for the levels, a small addition that we think could be useful to give the player a more general view of the surroundings, at least of the current area that the character is in.

When pressing a button the movement of the player stops and the camera zooms out to a distant view, so that players can look around for the correct route, to have a better sense of the environment, or maybe even just to appreciate the scenery. Depending on what area of the level the player is in, the camera zooms out to different points, so there are more than one 'level views'.

We are still testing and implementing this feature, and will work with it to see if it really is useful and improves the game or if on the other hand it gives too much away or removes part of the discovery and exploration focus.





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Sean Han Tani / seagaia
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« Reply #17 on: June 22, 2016, 03:22:58 AM »

have you played captain toad treasure tracker? while it doesn't always use the gravity idea, it has self-contained, planet-like spaces where you unlock new routes. could be interesting to look at.

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« Reply #18 on: June 22, 2016, 04:17:58 AM »

Beautiful! The scenes with water look especially good!
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« Reply #19 on: June 22, 2016, 03:10:00 PM »

have you played captain toad treasure tracker? while it doesn't always use the gravity idea, it has self-contained, planet-like spaces where you unlock new routes. could be interesting to look at.

I have it on my Wii U, but haven't played it yet. I have played some of the Toad stages on Super Mario 3D World though, and looking forward to playing the whole game, as the art style and those pocket-sized levels really piqued my interest. Didn't know it used gravity, is it like in Galaxy? I'll try to make some time to play it soon.

@ogat, @GrayGiantGames, @amanfr01, @ashtonmorris thanks for the good words, glad to see people liking the game. Will try to keep the updates coming Smiley
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